Senior Director of Digital Economy, Technology & Innovation, Canadian Chamber of Commerce
We tap into cloud solutions and cybersecurity every day. Storing photos online uses cloud services. Updating passwords is practising cyber-secure behaviour. So why is it that, in business, we become wary to adopt new technology?
Apprehension around new technology often comes down to the users themselves. The best technology in place won’t be effective if the user doesn’t know how to employ it properly or is focused on all the things that could go wrong.
A change in attitude and approach might be required — a transformative cultural shift — to focus on educating on the benefits of such tech tools while acknowledging that the majority of day-to-day technology isn’t rocket science. But it’s important to remember that with the adoption of technology comes responsibility.
Andrew Loschmann, Chief Operating Officer of Field Effect and a member of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, says it’s crucial to ensure a potential cloud service allows you to monitor the activity going on in your part of the cloud. This enables complete visibility of your network so it can be monitored by your cybersecurity solution for possible threats.
How COVID-19 revealed our technological dependency
The accelerated need for employees to work from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the inherent interconnectedness of the personal and professional realms. This abrupt change in working conditions has driven greater demands for cloud service and security tools, emphasizing our need to communicate sensitive data regardless of geography.
This brings us to the fundamental shift: moving from “Is the cloud secure?” to “Am I using the cloud securely?”
Two of the most-used technologies have been collaboration (cloud) and security (cyber) tools, with one in five small businesses in Canada experiencing a cyber-threat or attack over the past few months.
Cloud security breaches regularly make headlines — but often, the challenge exists not in the security of the cloud itself, but in the policies regarding security and control of the technology. Ultimately, it’s the user, not the cloud or cybersecurity provider, who’s more likely to fail to protect an organization’s data and information.
This brings us to fundamental shift: moving from “Is the cloud secure?” to “Am I using the cloud securely?”
Powering the next normal
Supporting a remote workforce requires a modern and flexible network alongside uncompromised connectivity and ongoing user education.
When configured correctly to implement security monitoring, cloud services can be used effectively and securely. This allows employees working from home to:
- Access and retrieve all the data and information as if onsite
- Collaborate via software as a service (SaaS), replicating the office environment through cloud-based virtual tools
- Easily use, share, and collaborate on sensitive and confidential information
- Acknowledge that cybersecurity involves understanding your network, acknowledging the risks, and knowing how to respond to threats promptly
The path to secure networks is quite easy, but many companies don’t take the required precautions. The key is understanding your threat surface, knowing what threats exist, and how to respond to them. And if that feels daunting, not to worry — there are people who can help.
As the work-from-home trend will continue well beyond the pandemic and will likely manifest itself as a permanent structure for many companies and their employees, cloud security will become an increasingly integral part of everyday business. A not-so-daunting must-have after all!